Lionel Messi confronted ‘troublesome’ time with WAG and admits they ‘stopped speaking’

Lionel Messi has opened up about the rocky road he’s had with his wife Antonella Roccuzzo.

The football icon, who married his childhood crush in a lavish 2017 ceremony in their native Rosario, Argentina, first crossed paths with Antonella when they were just children at nine years old. Fast forward to today, and the pair are proud parents to three sons: Thiago, Mateo, and Ciro.

Messi, famed for his long stint at Barcelona, made a heartfelt move last year to Inter Miami, partly owned by none other than England legend David Beckham. Antonella has been his rock, sticking by him through thick and thin.

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Chatting on the Willing to Everything podcast, Messi reminisced: “I used to go to her house because of her cousin and that’s where I met her, when we were very young. I always liked her.”

Leo’s talent was already blossoming back then, as he played for local clubs Grandoli and Newell’s Old Boys before Barca snapped him up. But his big move to Spain at 13 meant he and Roccuzzo drifted apart for years, reports the Mirror.

He confessed: “Then at 13 years old I went to Spain and we kind of lost contact. Communication was much more difficult than now. It was through letters, emails or some international phone calls which were expensive. So we stopped talking and distanced ourselves a lot.”

lionel messi and Antonella Roccuzzo
The pair are childhood sweethearts

However, Messi’s life took a turn when Antonella lost a friend in a tragic car accident. He flew back to Argentina, sparking the flame of their relationship once again, and they kept the connection alive through instant messaging.

Messi recalled: “At 16 or 17 years old we reconnected; communication was much easier with messenger, we chatted there. We got closer again; we hadn’t lost that feeling we had as kids; nothing had changed.”

As he neared his 20s, Messi and Antonella began dating seriously, and she made the move to join him in Barcelona. They celebrated the birth of their first son, Thiago, in November 2012, with Messi proudly inking his son’s name and handprints inside a heart on his leg.

Antonella Roccuzzo and Lionel Messi
Their relationship hasn’t been plain sailing

Reflecting on fatherhood’s profound effect, Messi shared with El Periodico in 2013: “My son has changed my life more than the Ballon d’Or [awards] have. When I look at life, think about each moment, when I analyse every situation…Now everything is different.”

The couple then welcomed their second son, Matteo, in September 2015, and tied the knot two years later in a grand ceremony at Rosario’s City Centre Hotel and Casino, an event that was hailed as Argentina’s “wedding of the century”.

As they walked down the aisle, confetti showered over them at the glitzy bash, which saw football royalty like Neymar, Luis Suarez, Gerard Pique, and Shakira among the guests.

Messi and Roccuzzo share three sons
Messi and Roccuzzo share three sons

Ciro, the third son, joined the Messi clan in March 2018. Messi remained a loyal Barcelona player until 2021 when he transferred to Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer.

After netting 22 goals in 58 appearances for the Ligue 1 giants, Messi and his family made the move to Miami in 2023, where they still reside.

His three sons, all being coached by their superstar dad, seem to be following closely in his footsteps, with Messi showing no signs of hanging up his boots anytime soon aged 36.